British Columbia is getting more paramedics, dispatchers and ambulances in an effort by the government to improve emergency services.
Health Minister Terry Lake says more than $91 million will be spent over the next three years to hire 60 paramedics, 20 emergency dispatchers and buy six new ambulances.
The province will also complete the implementation of a program that allows paramedics in 73 rural communities to provide minor health services to patients.
He says the funding for increased emergency staff and equipment goes beyond providing resources to fight the opioid overdose crisis that resulted in a record 922 deaths last year.
Lake says the extra ambulances, paramedics and dispatchers will result in faster response times for emergencies.
The provincial goal for responses in urban centres is within nine minutes in 75% of calls.
It’s unclear how much of the funding will be given to northern communities, but the northeastern part of the province will see an increase in the number of air ambulances on standby in the area.